Yea Harvard!

Yes, yours truly had the good fortune of spending a summer at Harvard for a French film workshop.  It was a great experience with Dr. Laurence Wylie, my hero. This senior majored in French (and Biology) at Cornell College in Iowa and it was there that I first read Dr. Wylie’s books on Provence.  There can be only one Harvard University, so let’s explore the school located in Cambridge in more detail.

Harvard today has over 2,100 faculty members and more than 10,000 academic appointments in affiliated teaching hospitals. Senior readers will discover that there are approximately 21,000 students, including undergraduate, graduate and professional students.   Currently there are 44 nobel laureates and former faculty members with around 300,000 living alumni who contribute to make the present endowment  just over…get this…$32 billion.

Harvard’s motto is “Veritas” (Latin for “truth”). I had a study carrel in the Harvard Library that houses over 17 million volumes. It was easy to get lost in the stacks. I recall well whenever I entered the library I saw an original Gutenberg Bible in the main lobby. It was an awesome artifact housed under glass.

 Harvard offers many scholarships for an average of around $11,000+ per student. Originally patterned after the Colleges at Oxford and Cambridge, the house system reflects the founders’ goals of a true residential college, a “collegiate way of living.” YouTube has a short overview of Harvard that highlights many stats that make the school unique.

The Name Harvard

Harvard is the oldest institution of higher education in the United States, established in 1636 by vote of the Great and General Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. It was named after the College’s first benefactor, the young minister John Harvard of Charlestown, who upon his death in 1638 left his library and half his estate to the institution.

Harvard’s Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) is dedicated to delivering an unparalleled student experience, redefining liberal arts education for the 21st century, and is committed to making a Harvard education accessible to students from all backgrounds.

The campus includes Harvard Yard right in the middle.  Most of the students in our group had a room on campus, but since my wife and two daughters with me, we found our own housing: a couple who wanted a house sitter for the summer in South Weymouth a suburb of Boston.

Seniors Investigate Wikipedia

Seniors will discover that 8 US presidents that include FDR and JFK are Harvard grads. Other notable alumni include Henry David Thoreau, Helen Keller, Yo-Yo Ma, Al Gore and Tommy Lee Jones. Senior historians can bone up on Harvard history and statistics via Wikipedia.

Harvard ranks third behind MIT and Cambridge in England as being the very best.  If you are ever in Cambridge or close to Boston,  drop by Harvard Yard and wander through the campus. It’s one of kind.

Thanks for joining me with a cup of coffee this morning:)  jeb



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